Thursday, September 14, 2006

Fear Revisited

I decide to forgo war once again and continue with my utter amazement of people’s inability to connect the dots, either unwilling or incapable. I’ll jump in with my 2 cents (Canadian) on terrorism as well since it’s the mot-du-jour following the anniversary of the twin-towers attack.

There was an article in this weekend’s newspaper about a poll on the Canadian peoples’ concern with home-grown terrorism and racial profiling. I read it cross-wise and I don’t want to revisit. First point: the least concerned are the Quebecois.

Pause for thought.

And pause again.

What the fuck?

We had our very own Quebecois terrorists back in the 70s that lead to a kidnapping and a murder. But we’re the least concerned? Check.

We had a sexually frustrated son of a 2nd generation immigrant shoot some women engineering students in ‘84. But we’re the least concerned? Check.

Then a professor, no less, takes offense upon his offending coworkers but a few years later.

As of yesterday, we now have a full-on disgruntled white-bread national wreaking havoc in yet another school. But we’re the least concerned? Check.

All terrifying!

But we’re least concerned? I mean seriously folks, that’s just messed up.

That people are unwilling to look in their own back yard and see what’s there is both amazing and distressing. The poll was slanted towards Islamofascists obviously, but I hope I’ve made my point about actual back yard terror.

(By the way, read David Warren’s excellent column “The enemy within -- and it's not who you think”, where I saw the term Islamofascist for the first time.)

We just don’t want to see it for what it is.

Our very own children perpetrate the worst acts of terror. “It’s just kids being kids” we’d say and dismiss it as a social problem. But then we point the finger at nations or particular presidents or prime ministers taking action to enflame terrorism onto our shores.

I’m not saying we are wrong to point fingers, what I am saying is that school-ground taxation is really just as serious a problem and instils the concept of terrorism at a young age. Indeed learning that the ability to induce fear in others is a powerful weapon. This is not lost on anyone with any sense.

Which leads to my second point, and I paraphrase the same poll article: something about foreign nationals and/or international religions affecting our local sense of fair play which we apparently learned at home, at church (… and in our schoolyards!)

Good grief.

I’m guessing schoolyards all over the world aren’t quite so different. I’m guessing fear is fear the world over and once you’ve learned to use it and seen that is works and works very well, it’s just too late. You can’t put the worms back in the jar.

My third point is that the poll itself is a bit stilted. Fear terrorism? Fear fear? See?

Fearing something legitimately fearsome like terrorism is of our natural sensibility. Nevertheless, if you give in to fear it’s already too late. “They” have won. That’s how the weapon works, its purpose is not to kill or maim, it’s to control you to do their bidding.

We learn to be subjugated to it, or to use it, in our very own schoolyards, and that’s why it’s so damned effective!

Lunch money, retribution, religious control, mutually assured destruction… the weapon is the same.


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